Taking Responsibility For Your Music Career with Radio Drive Featuring Kevin Gullickson

 If you don’t have someone to help make decisions and guide you with their resources, you can either do nothing and become stagnant or press on and make the best decision you can at the time. I decided to move on and take responsibility for where I was at and where I am going.

Band Name: Radio Drive featuring Kevin Gullickson
Jacqueline Jax logo photoInterview by Jacqueline Jax
host of A.V.A Live Radio
Person Interviewing: Kevin Gullickson

 Radio Drive is an Alternative Pop Rock band featuring Kevin Gullickson. As the engine behind Radio Drive, Kevin has won international awards and nominations for his songs and music videos. The music of Radio Drive is being aired on radio around the world alongside major artists and is receiving rave reviews by music critics. He has been featured on webzines and radio shows in Europe, Canada, and the USA.

Kevin’s music has landed on charts on indie stations around the world, including Canada, Germany, the UK and the South Pacific. His music has been used on shows airing on Animal Planet, National Geographic, Comedy Central, Fox Channels, History Channel, Spike TV and Discovery Channel in the USA and TV programs in England, Mexico, New Zealand and Australia.

Kevin’s 2014 release of “A Taste of Heaven” was raved about by critics and received massive radio play on indie stations around the world, winning awards and nominations.

In mid-August 2015 Kevin finished a project with internationally recognized producer, Stuart Epps. Stuart has worked with some of the most influential artists in music, including George Harrison, Bill Wyman, Jimmy Page, Elton John, Oasis and more. Kevin now has the honor of being listed among the artists Stuart has worked with. The result is a magnificent song entitled “Humanity”.

In 2017 Kevin was chosen by BEM Wireless to endorse their products. Currently, Kevin has engaged in a European radio campaign and is receiving extensive radio play of his music and in September and October 2017 “Humanity” has been in the Top 20 on the ToP INDéCOUVERTES—Official European Independent Music Chart and in October has landed at #2.

In April 2018 Kevin released his 5th full album titled “She Colors My World”, mastered by Robert L. Smith at Defy Recordings (credits include David Bowie, Aerosmith, Paul McCartney, just to name a few). Immediately songs from this new CD have been receiving international attention, with three already receiving awards from the Akademia Music Awards.

Song name: Time to Rise
Music Genre:: Alternative Pop Rock
“Time to Rise” is about taking the broken pieces of your life and putting it back together. Those pieces may be sharp. They may cut you and you may bleed, but it’s a good pain. It spurs you on to keep going and make it through into a new and stronger person. That pretty much summarizes my experience over the last few years, seeing so many of my plans and expectations comes crashing down (two European tours that both fizzled, my brother passing away from cancer, and the band taking a hiatus from which we never regrouped).

Yet, through the pain and disappointment, I kept going. I had to rise up from the ashes and fly.

The Beatles are the most influential to me – because they’re amazing. They revolutionized the music industry.
Led Zeppelin – all their amazing music and talent.
U2 – They keep reinventing their music, totally relevant and cutting edge.
ColdPlay – they’ve got great melodies and music.

 I’m fortunate to have my own recording studio, so I spend a lot of time there working out ideas. Usually, when I get a riff or an idea, I’ll first capture it on my iPhone. Then when I have time to power up my computer, I’ll start recording a scratch track. From there I’ll start adding the parts, guitar, drums, bass guitar, and so on.

For software, I use Magix ProX3 software and lots of plugins. iZotope has really been one of my favorites lately. I’ve got their Nectar and Mastering Suite. I use tons of midi sounds from my various libraries. Sometimes it takes me hours just to find the right sound. But I enjoy going through the vast number of sounds.

I do play all the instruments on my recordings (except for “A Taste of Heaven” which was recorded in LA by some amazing players). I suppose my favorite instrument is the guitar, but each instrument has it’s own unique qualities and is so much fun coming up with the parts.

I live in Lakeville, Minnesota, which is a suburb of St Paul. I don’t particularly like winter, which is odd to hear from someone who lives in 4 months of ice and cold. During the winter I spend most of my time in my studio working on music. During the summer, it’s quite the reverse, I love being outdoors. My family and I try to get out camping a few times each year. I do have a beautiful home with a large yard, which requires lots of maintenance, but I enjoy doing that in the summer sun.
 There are way too many great quotes that my family and I use to encourage each other. The one that comes immediately to mind is from the movie Galaxy Quest:

“Never give up, never surrender”.

We use that one all the time when we’re feeling down or discouraged, or facing what appears to be a roadblock in our plans.
 Since I just finished my new CD “She Colors My World”, all my time and goals are focused on promoting. I’ve launched a few radio promo campaigns, which are proving very successful. Plus, working with the AVA Live Radio community has been a great resource for promoting.

One tip that I learned about promoting, is to do something every day, whether it’s a Facebook post, or Twitter or Instagram, or send an email. Do one thing. Then at the end of the week, you will have done so much, then at the end of the month, that much more. Then it all starts adding up and you begin to see some real results promoting your music.

 I have learned so much this last year. I had some mental blocks that I had to overcome. Since I had worked with a producer on my last two singles, I thought I needed a producer for my next release. That’s great if you have the budget. I absolutely love working with a producer, and I’ve worked with some amazing ones, and I highly recommend it. But, for me, it became a roadblock. I had to press in and say to myself “I can do this”. So I learned to tap into the talents of producing my own music and released my new CD.

Another thing I learned was taking responsibility for my career, my plans, and goals. For so long I thought I needed a label or manager to work with. Again, its’ great if you have that, and I would love to work with the right team, but if you don’t have someone to help make decisions and guide you with their resources, you can either do nothing and become stagnant, or press on and make the best decision you can at the time. I decided to move on and take responsibility for where I was at and where I am going.

A third thing I’ve learned is to be thankful. I have always been thankful for all the amazing support from fans, radio stations, eZines, blogs, etc. Yet, as an artist aspiring to make a career in music, you want to see things increase, and that’s good. All business needs to increase. The trick is to be content where you’re at, knowing there’s more, and moving on with a plan to see bigger things.

So I’ve learned to be thankful and content where I’m at while envisioning bigger plans. It’s a bit of a balancing act, having one foot where you’re at, and one foot where you want to be.

 Now that I’ve proven to myself I can produce my own music and have my own studio, and no mental blocks, there’s nothing stopping me from recording endless music. I’ve already got plans for an EP this winter, perhaps 4-6 songs. I’m also working on music for television. Quite a few of my songs have been used in TV shows around the world, and I want to keep that momentum going. I’d love to bring the band back together and play a few gigs with my new music.
http://www.radio-drive.com
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